Cup contentment for Lichtsteiner
Stephen Lichtsteiner does not score many goals but when he does they are always of great importance.
After volleying home superbly against Monchengladbach in October to seal a vital away point in Champions League Group D, the Swiss went one better on Wednesday night, narrowly slotting past Etrit Berisha to send the Bianconeri into the Coppa Italia semi-finals at the expense of his former employers.
While “delighted” with his second-half strike, Lichtsteiner was typically pragmatic in his post-match analysis when reflecting on a tightly contested encounter that ultimately produced the right result on the night.
The match winner began, “We gave them one sight of goal in the first half and that was it, but we should have shut the game down beforehand. We played well but we showed again that we need to improve in putting matches to bed and taking advantage of our dominance.”
That said, Stephan was quick to point to the growing confidence of his team-mates in attacking opposition from the off and having the belief in themselves that was lacking in the early stages of the season.
“Our belief is back,” the wing back added. “At the start of the season we played reasonably well but lost a few games undeservedly. The older heads in the dressing room got the boys focused again and have rebuilt the confidence that was missing a few months ago.”
With such belief coursing through their veins and showing signs of returning to their relentless and unstoppable selves, Lichtsteiner believes that the Bianconeri have the requisite focus and determination to push for silverware on all three fronts regardless of the teams around them.
“We have to look after ourselves in the league. The teams around us are playing well, even Roma aren’t out of the title chase yet, but we’ll take things one game at a game.
“As for Sunday, the fact that Roma have changed their coach is of no importance to us. They are a strong side and we will be well prepared for one of the biggest games of the season.”